Gorakhpur hospital tragedy: Death toll reaches 63, oxygen vendor raided

Gorakhpur hospital tragedy: Death toll reaches 63, oxygen vendor raided

Health Minister of the local government Sidharth Nath Singh said in a statement that 60 children have died in the hospital since August 7 due to different diseases but not because of lack of oxygen cylinders.

Gorakhpur District Magistrate Rajeev Rautela confirmed the death of children in the last 48 hours at the Baba Raghav Das Medical College.

The Uttar Pradesh government on Saturday suspended Baba Raghav Das (BRD) medical college principal with immediate effect for his negligence which led to the death of infants.

"It is pertinent to note that liquid medical oxygen is indispensable for serious patients admitted in the hospital", the letter further warned.

"We will be getting more liquid oxygen cylinders tonight or tomorrow, and have also cleared the dues of the supplier", district official Kumar told AFP.

It is learnt that the supply shut down on Thursday night resulting in the death of 20 children.

He also said that there had been a delay in payment to the oxygen vendor by the college authorities and a probe has been ordered for this too. This comes at a time the ruling BJP government is looking to revamp the healthcare system in the state. There is also the allegation that there was a total amount of Rs 69 lakh on the hospital of the oxygen supplying agency. But the situation was managed with the help of cylinders. The supply was stopped yesterday (Thursday) but the hospital has enough cylinders in stock, ' he told AFP. "So the report about death of children because of oxygen issue is false". On Friday, after the plant went dry, doctors used ambu bags to supply oxygen but it could not be given beyond two hours. However, to defend itself, the U.P. government has been claiming that it has no links to the tragedy as the hospital had oxygen supplies from various other firms.

The main Oxygen gas supply unit of the BRD Medical University seen closed its level meter shows zero. Express
The main Oxygen gas supply unit of the BRD Medical University seen closed its level meter shows zero. Express

"We saw our baby struggling to breathe and we couldn't do anything", Gautam said as tears flowed down his weather-beaten cheek.

"Last month, I made two visits to the hospital and nobody raised or complained about any problem".

"We are now going back with his body", Gautam sobbed.

The carelessness has brought up an issue over the prevailing infrastructure in the State-run hospitals in Uttar Pradesh.

"The opposition is not indulging in politics but there is a difference between what the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) says and what it does", Akhilesh said. My thoughts are with the families of the victims.

Pained beyond words by this large tragedy, Sonia Gandhi said, "My heart goes out to the families of the innocent children who fell prey to gross negligence and incorrigible misconduct on the part of the authorities". The disease claims the lives of hundreds of children every year in this part of India.

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